CEBU CITY, Philippines – After closing down the night market in July, Mayor Edgardo Labella told reporters that it would soon reopen.
“I suggested to the market team that the market reopen from 6:30 pm until around 2 or 3 am,” Labella said in Cebuano.
Although the first-time mayor did not mention an exact opening date for the market, he said that he saw the reopening of the market as a solution to complaints by vendors who had been displaced during the clearing operations. (READ: Downtown Cebu City sidewalk vendors given Sunday noon deadline to relocate)
Public Restoration, Order Beautification, and Enhancement (Probe) head Raquel Arce would be in charge of determining where the market would be relocated.
The night market was previously located in an area in Barangay Ermita, including Colon Street.
Labella first wanted to meet the street vendors to discuss regulations and other matters before allowing them to operate again.
Cebu City cleared about 250 vendors from Colon Street and Osmeña Boulevard in downtown Cebu on September 29 and moved them to Taboy sa Banay (family market), an area with less vehicular traffic.
Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary Epimaco Densing III inspected the cleared streets last week and urged the city government to maintain the newly-cleared sidewalks.
But vendors complained that there was less foot traffic in their relocation site, resulting in lower income for the relocated vendors.
“It’s a matter of getting used to it,” Labella said.
With the night market, the mayor hopes to give vendors from barangayas Parian, Santo Niño, Kalubihan, and Ermita a chance to earn the same amount they were earning before, as long as they keep the market “clean.”
“We have to improve and organize the night market to allow them to use the area,” Labella said. He also reiterated that the night market would be managed and maintained by the city’s market authority and not a private individual. – Rappler.com